Counting And Spending Time
I heard on the radio on June 25 that there were six months left until Christmas. Kind of a chilly thought for a hot summer afternoon but true all the same. I remember a couple that would divide their stay in each of their two houses to half a year in each to the day. Now that is being precise with your time! All of us in some way or another keep track of time. I suppose that someone in prison watches the days closer as they count down to their release date Even at work people are counting down the hours to go home. It’s strange but the song lyrics “everybodies working for the weekend” can be very true. It’s also true that people wish a lot of their life away and how slow or fast time goes by. It seems when we are enjoying ourselves it flies and when we are in the dentist’s chair for instance it drags!
It’s funny how we set our watches and car clocks. How many times do we set them a little ahead to trick ourselves to be early? Of course then we end up knowing that it is set early and adjusting the time in our minds. Recently I was in the market for a watch. I noticed one that really caught my eye! It was beautiful and looked to be just what I was looking for. However, upon further inspection I noticed how hard it was to read. They made clear looking hands that blended right in with the watches background. I couldn’t see myself staring at the watch for a few seconds trying to adjust my eyes to where the hands actually were. It seems the maker forgot that the most important purpose of the watch is to read the time!
In the middle of summer when I’m walking by a field with the smell of freshly mowed grass and the sound of sprinklers spraying in a rhythm I’m reminded about a time years ago playing ball at the baseball clinic. Our senses have a way of bringing back moments in time! It happens to most of us when we hear a song on the radio and go back to a place in time when that song was relevent. Maybe it was a teenage memory or maybe the song reminds us of other people that were in our lives at that time. Our senses seem to bring us to a built in calendar that has recorded events with sights, smells, and sounds!
The earliest calendars had only ten months starting in March. Many were named after Greek and Roman mythology. The first two months as we know them were unnamed until later on. You may be surprised by the orgins of the names of the months. March for instance is named after Mars, the God of war. April is Latin for “to open” as in when the buds of plants open. May for the goddess of growth of plants. June for the goddess of Juno. July was named after empereror Julius Caesar just as August was named after Augustus Caesar. September through December were named after the Latin words for seven, eight, nine, and ten. Later January was named after the God of doors and gates and February was named after a time when sacrifices were made to atone sins. Man was born to worship something and as you can see from the formation of the month names, many were named for Gods that don’t exist.
Some people write important things on their calendar. There are a few who keep a diary of what goes on day to day in their lives. A year and a half ago I started writing about experiences I have been through on this site. People have told me that it will be a source of history for my family. Like most people I have not been much of a record keeper of my days. I very rarely get in front of a camera like some people do. I notice on sites like Facebook that there are some that have a new picture of themselves all of the time!
My calendar at work has only general entries and our one at home is basically the same. I may write dentist appointment on one of the days and the time, or A.L. for annual leave. When the calendar is used up it has no historic purpose to keep it around since nothing was a personal reflection. I used to have a big calendar on my desk at work that laid down flat with twelve giant sheets for each month. I liked the idea of seeing all of the days at once. Later I switched to a smaller model with the same view. Finally I went with the day by day little calendar that is in the little plastic holder that you turn the page every day. I have on my desk now a Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Calendar which has oddball facts of people that do and did strange but entertaining things! This calendar at least is entertaining and still leaves me room to record the dentist visit or the vacation day.
They say that time waits for nobody and we all know that it’s true. I’m reminded of a story I heard about a couple going to their 30th high school class reunion. After taking two steps into the door and looking around the husband turns to his wife and proclaims “I think we are in the wrong room honey, there are only old people here”. Whether we see it or not each day we are getting older. Each day that calendar of things in the past turns another page.
I’m reminded of the most awesome thing about heaven “eternal life”. It will be a place where we never will get old. It will be a place where as the song goes when we’ve been there a thousand years, we’ll have no less days than when we first begun. We won’t have days to keep track of as a sign that there is an end. Until then time is the most precious thing any of us have here. How much money is one day of life worth? It can’t be measured in monetary terms. None of us know how much time we are given. It is one thing that is not guaranteed. Our time accounts are dwindling. If there is something we need to do, we need to do it now before our clock stops ticking.
By Lewis Hamilton
From the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997
I have time on my hands,
quick, flick on the TV
It is so automatic,
security to me
Oh yes, I am a Christian
but it never occurs to me,
the extra time that I have found
could be time my spirit feeds
I’ve heard the expression all my life,
I have some time to kill
Just throwing it away so quickly,
please help me do your will
I claim that I love you God,
why do go my way?
You want me to obey you
and listen to what you say
I have no trouble sitting
for hours around the TV,
but when it comes to praying,
Lord, look over me
The Lord showed me a true test,
one to put me back in line
Whatever is important to me
is how I’ll spend my time
I’ve wasted so much of my life,
please help me draw the line
and give you all I have, dear Lord,
especially my time.
Be joyful always, pray continually,
give thanks in all circumstances, for
this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
I Thessalonians 5:16-18